The Point

Eighth Circuit Cites Supreme Court as It Upholds Abortion Restrictions


John Stonestreet

David Carlson

Last week the Eighth Circuit Court ruled that Arkansas could increase abortion restrictions, including banning certain procedures and adding notification laws for minors.  That’s good news. Surprising, however, was why. The Eighth Circuit cited the recent Supreme Court ruling in June Medical Services vs. Russo—where Chief Justice Roberts wrote that states couldn’t impose a “substantial obstacle” to women seeking abortions. 

Many pro-lifers—including me—were quite dismayed when Roberts sided with liberal justices. But it may be that Roberts, intentionally or unintentionally, actually gave states significant room to define what counts and doesn’t count as a “substantial obstacle” to them.

Writing at the Washington Post, Mary Ziegler predicts that “the court is well on its way to dismantling abortion rights… without saying a word about Roe itself.

I hope she’s right. I hope we all misjudged Justice Roberts. But, what I know for sure, we all need to know how to make the case for life.


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